Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Teaching Books: The Heart of Teaching by Audrey J. Sirota with Laura Ianocone Taschek

[I'm not going to try to review the books I'm reading as part of my transition to becoming an educator. However, I do want to at least do summaries, both for myself and if anyone's interested. Consider these mini-reviews, if you will.]

This book offers a look at some actual lesson plans used by either individual or groups of teachers across a variety of grades and subjects that put a high focus on literacy, interactivity, and achievement.

They are grouped into sections based on the primary focus of the lesson (participation, complex thinking, making connections, etc.) and generally contain three examples for the reader to consider. In several cases, the reader is even allowed to see how the lesson plan was revised over time to make it better, based on either student feedback or seeing how it worked in the classroom.

Heart of Teaching shows how effective lesson plans can be created with scoring rubrics and goals based on state achievement tests without using the standard lecture format. In fact, in almost every case, the lessons were revised to reduce lecture time as much as possible. It also helps to show that creating a lesson plan does not need to be complex so much as it needs to be focused.

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